Macron praises France’s ‘unbreakable tie’ with UK after first call with King Charles

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President Emmanuel Macron praised France’s “unbroken relationship” with Britain after a phone call offered condolences to King Charles III.

It is the second time since the death of the Queen that the French leader has emphasized relations between the two countries after Prime Minister Liz Truss controversially questioned whether France was a friend or foe of the UK .

Posting on Twitter after Queen Elizabeth II’s coffin was placed at Westminster Hall for let-in-state, Mr Macron wrote: “In a phone conversation with His Majesty King Charles III last night, I spoke to his mother, Condolences to France on his death. Queen Elizabeth II. I will attend the funeral in London on Monday.

“The relations between France and the United Kingdom are unbroken. We will continue to strengthen them by following the path set by Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II.

During her campaign to become leader of the Conservative Party, Liz Truss told Tory members during a lead in Norwich that she was undecided about whether her counterparts in Paris were “friends or foes”.

TalkTV’s Julia Hartley-Brewer, hosting the event, asked Truss: “President Macron, friend or foe?”

“The jury is out,” she responded to the loud applause of Tory members. Truss then added: “But if I become prime minister, I will judge him by deeds, not words.”

He was accused of “malicious” lack of judgment and damage to diplomatic relations with France after President Emmanuel Macron was called a “jury out”.

Gavin Barwell, a former Tory minister and colleague, tweeted: “You would have thought the Foreign Secretary knew we were in a military alliance with France”. Commentators referred to his comments as “mourning” and “weapon-class stupidity”, with Times columnist Hugo Rifkind tweeting: “You look at this and you think, ‘How can someone saying that ever PM? Maybe?’ And then you will remember that he is already Foreign Secretary.”

The UK and France have clashed in recent months over a range of issues, including boat crossings across the English Channel and travel chaos in Dover. In an apparent attempt to smooth diplomatic relations, Boris Johnson has described the French president as the UK’s “tres bonne boy”.

He also claimed that Mr Macron was a “great, great admirer of our country”. He told reporters: “I think I’ve always had a very good relationship with Emmanuel Macron. Emmanuel Macron est un tres bon buddy de notre pays.”

In his first reaction to the comments last month, Mr Macron described Britain as an ally and said its people will always be friends of France, despite occasional errors by its leaders.

Asked about remarks by Ms Truss, she said: “Britain is a friend of France, I have no doubt about it,” but she warned: “If France and Britain cannot say whether they are friends or foes .. Then we are headed for serious problems.”

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